grilled zucchini, chevre; picanha; tomato; roasted potatoes

Sure, it was steak and potatoes, with one small red tomato for a light touch – and – color, but before that there was a very light appetizer of freshly grilled zucchini slices with a really good local chevre and some spicy mint.

I think the news about a study about meat studies had just broken around the time I started planning this meal, but I wouldn’t have impacted them in any event. Compared to most Americans, we eat very little meat, but we really enjoy it when we do, and the latest fuss, like so much other modern food advice fuss, seems to have no basis.

I don’t know anything about ‘ScienceAlert’ (there’s no ‘about’ on the home page), or Gideon Meyerowitz-Katz, the author of the article on this subject which I found on its site, but one statement I found there seems about right, at least to this non-scientist:

There is some evidence that red meat consumption might be harmful, but it’s not strong enough to justify telling people to change their dietary habits.

Basically, keep doing whatever you are currently doing, because we simply don’t know if it’s harmful or not.


  • one 7-ounce zucchini from Stokes Farm, sliced lengthwise into pieces about a quarter of an inch thick, tossed in a bowl with a generous amount of sea salt and allowed to rest for about a half hour, rinsed well, dried, tossed inside a bowl again, this time with a little olive oil, 2 finely-chopped garlic cloves from Stokes Farm, salt, freshly-ground black pepper, and a bit of dried Itria-Sirissi chili, pepperoncino di Sardegna intero from Buon Italia, then pan grilled, turning 2 or 3 times, on the top of a large ribbed cast iron grill plate, arranged on the 2 plates, sprinkled with torn peppermint leaves from Lani’s Farm and more olive oil, arranged on a medium plate, and crumbled with some wonderful Consider Bardwell Farm chèvre, ‘Mettawee’
  • slices from a loaf of Pain d’Avignon seven grain bread (whole wheat, honey, sesame-sunflower-flax seed, oats) from Foragers Market

The steak course, as I suggested, was almost a throwback; only the herbs might have betrayed it was the 21st century.

  • one picanha/culotte steak (18.5 ounces) from Sun Fed Beef in the Union Square Greenmarket, defrosted, brought to room temperature, seasoned on all sides with sea salt, a generous amount of freshly-ground black pepper, and seared for less than a minute on the top, thick, fat-covered side, then briefly on the opposite side, inside a dry oval heavy enameled cast iron pan, then the 2 long sides cooked for 3 or 4 minutes each, removed from the pan at the moment it had become perfectly medium-rare (checking with an instant-read thermometer), carefully cut crosswise into 2 pieces of the same weight and arranged on 2 warm plates while a bit of juice from an organic Chelsea Whole Foods Market California lemon was squeezed on top, followed by a drizzle of a little very good Cretan olive oil, then scattered with scissored bronze fennel flowers from Rise & Root Farm, and allowed to rest for about 4 minutes before being served
  • one small red heirloom tomato from Norwich Meadows Farm, sliced in half horizontally, sprinkled with sea salt, black pepper, and a little chopped lovage from Quarton Farm, briefly sautéed inside a small copper skillet, turning once, arranged on the plates and drizzled with a very small amount of oilve oil
  • roughly three quarters of a pound of medium ‘Chieftain’ potatoes, with red skin and white flesh, from Keith’s Farm, washed, scrubbed, dried, halved, tossed inside a bowl with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, dried dark golden habanada, and sprigs of tender young rosemary from TransGenerational Farm, arranged in (on?) a medium Pampered Chef unglazed ceramic pan and roasted at 400º for about 25 or 30 minutes, arranged on the plates and sprinkled with [more rosemary, I think]
  • the wine was a Portuguese (Estremadura) red, Montaria 2017, from Naked Wines, an excellent wine, and também uma grande pechincha
  • the music was a delightful album, ‘L’orchestre De Louis XIII’, composed of early seventeenth century French court music by various composers, written for “..solemn events during the reigns of Henry III, Henry IV and Louis XIII, including several Concerts for their royal entertainment, gathered together in an anthology by Philidor the Elder in 1690., performed by Jordi Saval and Le Concert des Nations